/ 18 November 2021

The science of grandmotherly love

Image source: Pexels
Image source: Pexels

In the first study of its kind, researchers reckon grandmothers may be more emotionally connected to their grandchildren than to their own children. That wouldn’t come as a surprise to many parents… Researchers studied the brain functions of 50 grandmothers as they looked at photos of their family members and strangers. They found that when the women looked at images of their grandchildren, it triggered the areas of the brain associated with emotional empathy, which means they are “geared toward feeling what their grandchildren are feeling when they interact with them”. On the other hand, images of the women’s own children activated brain areas associated with cognitive empathy, which is when one understands rather than feels another person’s emotions. Nana always was a soft touch…

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